noun \-jē\

: the study of family history

: the history of a particular family showing how the different members of the family are related to each other

plural ge·ne·al·o·gies

Full Definition of GENEALOGY

:  an account of the descent of a person, family, or group from an ancestor or from older forms
:  regular descent of a person, family, or group of organisms from a progenitor or older form :  pedigree
:  the study of family pedigrees
:  an account of the origin and historical development of something
ge·ne·a·log·i·cal \ˌjē-nē-ə-ˈlä-ji-kəl, ˌje-nē-\ adjective
ge·ne·a·log·i·cal·ly \-k(ə-)lē\ adverb

Examples of GENEALOGY

  1. They've been researching their genealogies.
  2. <has a distinguished genealogy that traces back to William the Conqueror>


Middle English genealogie, from Anglo-French, from Late Latin genealogia, from Greek, from genea race, family + -logia -logy; akin to Greek genos race
First Known Use: 14th century

Other Anthropology Terms

ectomorph, ethnography, prehistory, yurt


noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

Study of family origins and history. It is found in most parts of the world and is international in scope. Originally concerned with tracing royal, aristocratic, or clerical lines, genealogy has broadened its scope over the centuries, and many ordinary people now pursue it as a hobby. In preliterate cultures genealogical information was transmitted orally, usually as a list of names; later generations recorded this information. Divine origins were often ascribed to kings and heroes. Modern genealogists use artifacts, including ancient records, coins, deeds, tapestries, paintings, and monuments, to help them in their work.


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